Opha May Johnson

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Opha May Johnson

Berichtdoor Tandorini » 16 aug 2013, 22:37


Opha Mae Johnson (February 13, 1900 – January 1976) was the first woman to enlist in the United States Marine Corps. She joined the Marine Corps Reserve in 1918.

Johnson was a United States Marine in the late 1910s. She became the first woman to enlist in the Marine Corps on August 13, 1918, when she joined the Marine Corps Reserve during World War I. Johnson was the first of 305 women to enlist in the United States Marine Corps Women's Reserve that day.

Enlistment came half a century after Susan B. Anthony championed women's rights, and some twenty years after Alice Paul fought for the same cause. Johnson was seen as another combatant in the nations recent women's rights movement.

When she became a Marine, she was given a category of "F" (for female). In those days women were allowed to enlist but were not allowed to serve in war zones. Opha Mae Johnson may have worked as a secretary, cook, but not a military nurse (the Marine Corps doesn't have any sort of medic MOS, that is carried out by the Navy), or other jobs the first Marine women were allowed to perform, while her male counterparts were being sent to fight in France.

It would not be until the 1940s that female Marines were allowed to serve in a war zone.

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Marine Forces Reserve
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United States Marine Corps Women's Reserve
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